Friday, July 30, 2010

Summer Pudding

This is the dessert you make when it is too hot to cook, and you're exhausted. Stale white bread, frozen odds and ends of berries, and sugar. That's it. If you're feeling fancy, make some whipped cream, or a custard sauce to go with it.

Some people dip the bread slices into the liquid, then arrange them in the bowl. That technique will give you better coverage than spooning it over, so if you care about covering every last white space on your pudding, you'd best dip. Me? I spoon, because I'm lazy. This is a lazy person's dessert.

I'm a huge fan of lining the bowl with cling film, because let's face it-the universe is out to get me. Knowing this, I try not to encourage disaster, and cling film really helps hold the damn thing in place. If you're feeling confident, go ahead and skip it at your own peril. Maybe you're on better terms with the universe.

I made this early in the morning for tonight. Give the pudding at least 12 hours to soak up the juice and press into place. I weight it with a large tin of tomatoes (or whatever) atop a plate, which seems to do the trick.

These work really well in individual sizes as well, so go ahead and experiment with the bowls you have. The main thing is to really make sure the bread is fitted closely together, filling any gaps, and then saturated with liquid. Fill the centre with the slightly cooked fruit (I used blueberries and strawberries) and then place more bread on top for the eventual base. Soak it thoroughly with the remaining liquid, cover, and weight it-that's it. The amount of sugar you add to the berries is a mater of taste, but I prefer it rather sweet for this dessert. I'd go about 3/4 cup sugar to 4 cups fruit, roughly. Adjust as you go.

There you have it, a recipe without an actual recipe, but take my word for it-this doesn't require step-by-step guidance.

Summer puddings are even better the next day for breakfast.

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